You know that saying, “there’s only one way to go from here!”? Well, be careful when you use that! How many of us had that attitude coming out of 2020, with no idea that an entire year later, “normal” would still be a semi-mythical term to describe the way things were in 2019. Granted, for many, things have relaxed or returned to at least a new “normal”, but living in SoCal, and working for a huge company like Intuit, we’ve still felt pretty un-normal this year.
2021 might have topped the scales in some regards for most challenging year yet (not exactly the achievement I was hoping for). I said goodbye to several grandparents, we worked ourselves to exhaustion, we didn’t even come close to the other mythical term in our home: work/ life balance.
On the flip side – there were a handful of highlights too: My auntie heart grew by 2 feet (and 19 inches), we upped our pandemic cardio game by adding a Peloton to my office décor (751 rides later), we managed to sneak away off the grid for just a couple days with Brian’s family for some Austin time (checked “explore abandoned gold mine” off the bucket list), and we got to celebrate birthdays and the holidays here in our new home with family.
One of the things I will always remember the most about my beloved Grandmother, is that no matter what challenge she faced, she never ever complained. She always looked at the bright side, talked about the positive, and sought out the joy in any circumstance. She even had a little song about it that my brothers and I rolled our eyes to as children, as she’d hum it along our merry way. What I wouldn’t give to hear her gentle voice humming that little tune…I miss her dearly, but somehow I feel like her gift to me this year was to remember that. I find myself thinking of her often when things get tough, and laughing about what her spin on it would have been.
As I’ve taken time this year working on my own personal growth, and spent many hours in self-reflection, I’ve acknowledged that by nature, I’m a stresser, a worrier, and as my son would say, “if future tripping was an Olympic sport, I’d definitely take the gold medal”. Who knows what tomorrow will have in store for us – I’ve learned my lesson about planning too far ahead these days. But this year has allowed me to step back and look at the world like Grandma. To see the bright side, to celebrate the beautiful moments, stop stressing about tomorrow, and instead be content in the moment – even if it’s just for today.
May you find the joy in the normal, the reward in the struggle, and may 2022 be filled with countless (big and small) moments worth celebrating…Happy New Year!